One of the most popular pets in the world is the German Shepherd and they come in a wide variety of colors and sizes. The general and widely known appearance of the German Shepherd is large, strong and good looking. It can also have a long or short coat, usually with double coats in cream and white colors, but can also be solid black. Less popular German Shepherd colors include white and silver. In most dog shows, German Shepherds with white or silver fur are disqualified. However, there are some enthusiasts who like these “color challenged” dogs.
history of the german shepherd
The German Shepherd comes from a line of sheepdogs originally intended to herd sheep and as a faithful companion to the shepherd. With ongoing industrialization, the need to herd sheep became less and less and there was speculation about other potentials for dogs to help humans with their work. At the end of the 19th century, it was Captain Max von Stephanitz who saw the potential in developing a breed of sheepdog to maximize its potential. He met a very strong, intelligent and beautiful dog which he named Horand v. Grafrath. This dog was registered as the first German Shepherd. He created an official governing body that restricted the breeding of dogs to only those that met the standards. This allowed for the rapid development of the German Shepherd breed. After World War I, British and American soldiers were so impressed by the breed that they took some of them to their own countries.
Today breeding is maintained among German Shepherds to protect the breed. Now there are different lines, such as the International Working Line, the International Show Line, and the North American Show Line. However, “mutations” still occur within the breed, such as in the case of German Shepherds with white or silver fur. Some purists do not find these “mutations” acceptable, arguing that silver and white-coated German Shepherds should not be considered purebred. In most dog shows, silver and white German Shepherds are disqualified because their coat is considered a genetic “flaw.” There are clubs that try to support this type of German Shepherd such as the White and Silver German Shepherd Club. They push for white and silver dogs to be recognized as standard. Color is largely genetic. White and silver fur usually comes from the tan and yellow line. However, the genetics of color and pigmentation in dogs are not yet fully understood.